Efficient downtown transportation is essential to the success of the DMC Development Plan, and local residents are being asked to help drive the future of this important component.
The city of Rochester is conducting four integrated transit studies to support and advance DMC’s plan. On January 24, study consultants will host the first of four public conversations to share their findings and listen to the thoughts of attendees on transportation in downtown.
Richard Freese is the director of the city’s Public Works Department and feels that Rochester is a unique city requiring a unique approach to travel demand management. “Since the invention of the automobile, cities around the world have tried unsuccessfully to build their way out of traffic congestion by building more or wider roads,” Freese says.
Taxis, Uber, Lyft. Personal transportation is at the forefront of many discussions taking place in Rochester recently. And while DMC, the city, and community leaders and advocates are dedicated to ensuring that transportation solutions support the growth of the city, those solutions will require more than the point-A-to-point-B services provided by the above options.
Enter Chamberlain, Rochester’s own unique but generally undiscovered transportation service that goes the extra mile for its customers.
Chamberlain is dedicated to providing black car transportation but has found that customers are looking for more. “They want a personal touch,” says owner Laura Elwood, so Chamberlain includes concierge and lifestyle management services as options for its guests. And, according to Elwood, serving those guests is the highlight of the Chamberlain story.
Since Rochester City Lines stopped their commuter route from Le Roy and Grand Meadow to Rochester in 2014, the demand has not stopped. Le Roy has tried a couple options, but it thinks their new bus service is the key to meeting that demand.
“It was a nice grassroots effort – It just proves you only need a handful of people,” said Axel Gumbel who is part of Le Roy’s Economic Development Authority.
Projects would add over 270 apartment units and 200 hotel rooms to DMC district
ROCHESTER, Minn. (Oct. 27, 2016) – The Destination Medical Center Corporation (DMCC) Board of Directors today received a preliminary view of two significant mixed-use project proposals aimed at building hotel, retail, and residential housing options in key sub-districts within the DMC District. Board members also received an update regarding transportation planning efforts and approved the DMCC’s funding request for 2017.
Titan Real Estate and Investments and the Opus Group provided initial background on a proposed 156-unit apartment complex that would be built in the Discovery Square district upon a First Ave. surface parking lot. The development would include retail and parking within, as well as a green roof and pedestrian access to downtown. Titan, a local company, was the developer of “Broadway at Center,” one of two DMC-approved projects.
Four transportation consulting groups gathered in Rochester this week to observe traffic conditions and transit operations on a typical weekday and, ultimately, advance the DMC vision through first-hand knowledge of existing capabilities and future needs.
The DMC Plan identifies the need to create an integrated system of parking and transit options to better facilitate pedestrian and bicycle options and create efficient, healthy, high-amenity options that can accommodate a doubling of downtown jobs. “Infrastructure is the backbone of our DMC planning, with transportation being a critical component,” says Lisa Clarke, DMC EDA executive director. A world-class transportation network would not only improve livability for Rochester’s residents and businesses but also attract the workforce talent required to achieve the DMC vision.
ROCHESTER, Minn. (August 25, 2016) – At today’s board meeting, the Destination Medical Center (DMC) Corporation Board of Directors took a major step forward on DMC’s Heart of the City sub-district by approving the recommendation of the Heart of the City Community Advisory Committee to select RSP Architects as the design team for public space in Heart of the City. The DMC Corporation Board also was updated on the latest progress of the Discovery Square sub-district and transportation.
“The Heart of the City district is an essential part of our strategy to ensure Rochester’s place as America’s City for Health,” said Lt. Governor Tina Smith, DMC Corporation Board Chair. “It will be the place where Mayo Clinic, medical innovation, new business and hospitality opportunities, and housing choices all meet. Today’s announcement takes us a step closer to this goal.”
Following the meeting, the DMC Corporation Board toured the recently reopened Conley-Maass Building located in Discovery Square and met with the building’s tenants and collaborators.
In a first of its kind joint planning session on Destination Medical Center Thursday, the topic on the tip of every tongue was transportation.
The Destination Medical Center Corp. board of directors hosted the meeting with the Rochester City Council and the DMC Economic Development Agency board. It was the first time the three boards had convened.
The agenda was wide-ranging, but transit issues were the consistent theme. City staff is preparing to request an amendment with its transit management consultant, SRF, at a July 6 council meeting. The amendment would allow the city to expand its contract with SRF to move forward with studies of four key transportation areas.
ROCHESTER, Minn. (June 23, 2016) – At today’s board meeting, the Destination Medical Center (DMC) Corporation Board of Directors discussed Mayo Clinic’s recent announcement of a major milestone for DMC’s Discovery Square; highlights from this year’s BIO International Convention; DMC urban design guidelines; and updates on DMC priorities, including Heart of the City and transportation.
“Mayo Clinic’s investment in Discovery Square is an exciting step for the City of Rochester. Discovery Square will propel the development of innovative ideas, products, and businesses in southeast Minnesota,” said Lt. Governor Tina Smith, DMC Corporation Board Chair. “We are well-positioned to make Rochester ‘America’s City for Health’ and the world’s premier destination for health and wellness.”
ROCHESTER, Minn. (May 26, 2016) – At today’s board meeting, the Destination Medical Center (DMC) Corporation Board of Directors highlighted the substantial progress being made on projects in the DMC District. These projects include some of the DMC’s top development priorities: Discovery Square, Heart of the City, and transportation improvements. The Board also heard plans for DMC’s participation in this year’s BIO International Convention, the largest international event for the biotechnology industry.
Rochester City Administrator Stevan Kvenvold said the City shares the Board’s emphasis on early transportation planning as essential to long-term development of Destination Medical Center.
Part of that will mean working to define specific plans and work with the Federal Department of Transportation to secure grants and funding for the projects, something the City intends to undertake in partnership with the Rochester-Olmsted Planning Department.
While the transportation piece will be critical to setting the stage for resident and visitor movement into and throughout Rochester, Kvenvold’s updates on the Chateau Theatre will perhaps be of more import to local residents who have championed preservation and re-opening of the historical landmark.
The city’s bid to purchase the Chateau from its current owner is tentatively set to finalize within the next “couple of weeks,” Kvenvold said.